Shahram Hadian proudly takes credit for creating the $250 million mess that’s left 155,000 Idaho children in danger of losing the support payments they need.
Why would anybody take credit for that? You haven’t met Shahram Hadian.
Weeks before the fateful vote in the House Judiciary Committee that left Idaho families in peril, Hadian spoke to GOP lawmakers in a closed-door meeting. Rep. Vito Barbieri (R-Dalton Gardens) invited him to speak. The title of Hadian’s presentation was “The True Face of Islam.” During the meeting, Hadian explained that Muslims are infiltrating Idaho and creating Islamic enclaves. He also provided lawmakers with a two-page summery of his concerns of S 1067, the bill the provides funding for enforcing child support.
Unfortunately for Idaho families, five members of the House Judiciary Committee attended that meeting. They are Rep. Shannon McMillan (R-Silverton), Rep. Heather Scott (R-Blanchard) Rep. Kathleen Sims (R-Coeur d’Alene), Rep. Ron Nate (R-Rexburg), and Rep. Don Cheatham (R-Post Falls). All five voted against S 1067.
Hadian’s closed-door talk didn’t go over very well in the religious community. In fact, three interfaith groups condemned it as ignorant fear-mongering. But it didn’t matter. By then the damage was done.
Hadian, 44, was born in Iran. His family immigrated to the United States days before the fall of the Shah. Fourteen years ago, he converted from Islam to Christianity. Since then, he’s earned a reputation for being an unapologetic fanatic for the extreme right. He’s also known for a deep hatred of Islam that has the vitriol of a personal grudge.
In Washington, he ran for governor in 2012 on an extreme-right platform. See his campaign flyer.
- Anti-abortion, life starts at conception, no exceptions
- Opposes marriage equality
- Slash education funding
- Anti-immigration reform
- Denies climate change
- Oppose health care reform
- Oppose Agenda 21
No surprise, he only received 3.27 percent of the vote.
He also believes President Barack Obama is a Muslim.
But he is also part of the disturbing movement on the far-right wings of the Republican Party that believes armed insurrections (a.k.a. “Second Amendment remedies”) are valid processes for expressing political will.
Here he is talking at a “Guns Across America” rally in Olympia.
In case you don’t have time to watch the 12 minute video, here are some highlights.
“Tyranny is now at our doorsteps, it is now in our path it is now in our faces. It is the reality for our children if we do not act now…We are on the verge of a dictatorship. And we must rise up to the challenges ahead of us.”
He then declared, “The battle is on.”
Remember, he was talking to a group of right-wing gun advocates about the need to have guns to fight the government. He’s not telling people to vote or advocate for policy positions. He’s telling them to use their guns to change policy through an armed insurrection.
It’s hard to fathom that this one man is responsible for putting so many Idaho children and families at risk. It’s unbelievable that he could cost Idaho a quarter billion dollars.
But what’s more disturbing is that so many Idaho House members actually believe Hadian over the Attorney General — who said the bill has no threat of sharia law, 535 members of Congress — who passed the uniform legislation without a single objection, and Idaho Senators — who voted in favor of S 1067 unanimously.
In politics, kook are everywhere. They are normal fixtures of the landscape. They always have been. It’s disturbing enough that GOP lawmakers are inviting them into the Capitol. It’s inexcusable that lawmakers are believing them. But when the kooks are setting our public policy, to the detriment of Idaho children and families, we have a real problem.
A problem we need to fix in the next election.